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Reps Begin Probe of SEEPCO Over Local Content Utilization

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Femi Gbajabiamila
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By Orkula Shaagee, Abuja


The House of Representatives has mandated its Committees on Petroleum Resources (Upstream), Petroleum Resources (Downstream) and Nigerian Content and Monitoring Development to investigate the level of utilization of the Local Community and the Nigeria human and material resources by Sterling Oil Exploration and Energy Production Company Limited (SEEPCO) in Ndokwa/Ukwuani Federal Constituency of Delta State.

The Committees are to report back within four (4) weeks for further legislative action.


This followed a motion on the ‘Need to Investigate Sterling Oil Exploration and Energy Production Company Limited (SEEPCO’s) Non-Compliance with Nigeria Local Content Act, sponsored by Nicholas Ossai (PDP, Delta).
Ossai noted that the enactment of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act of 2010 (otherwise called the Local Content Act) was a milestone in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry.


“Also notes that the Local Content Act was enacted to provide a Legal Framework for increased Nigerian’s participation in all the activities connected with exploration, exploitation, development, transportation and sale of crude oil and gas resources in the Nigerian oil and gas industry.
“Further notes that the Local Content Act specifies 70% use of indigenous labour, materials and resources in all oil and gas projects in the Nigerian oil and gas sector.
“Aware that Sterling Oil Exploration and Energy Production Company Limited (SEEPCO), an Indian company with businesses in 6 continents and several countries such as India, USA, China, Japan, Europe, Middle East and South East Asia, ventured into Nigerian oil and gas market in 2005 and is presently, successfully producing crude oil in the Niger Delta;

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“Observes that most of the human and material resources and services being utilized by SEEPCO in the Niger Delta region and particularly, in Ndokwa/Ukwuani Federal Constituency are mostly Indians.
“Informed that under the Local Content Act prescribed that the minimum Nigerian content requirement in any project, service or product specification to be executed in the Nigerian oil and gas industry shall be consistent with the level set-out in the Schedule to the Act.


“Cognizant that the neglect over the years by the Nigerian Content Monitoring Board that is saddled with responsibility to monitor, supervise and coordinate the Local Content Act, has grossly defeated the purpose of the prescribed minimum thresholds for Nigerian participation in the activities within the Nigerian oil and gas industry. “Also aware that Section 16 l(c) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 enjoins the Federal Government to “manage and operate major sectors of its economy,” thereby avoiding foreign domination of the economy”, Ossai stated.


The House therefore, directed the Federal Ministry of Environment to carry out a sustainable campaign on the dangers of Nylon and Plastic waste, and to, as a matter of urgency, initiates a programme for collection and recycling of nylon and plastic wastes across the nation.

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It mandated the Committee on Environment to Investigate the circumstances surrounding the non-implementation of Plastic Policy of the Federal of Environment in Collaboration with States and report back within four (4) weeks for further legislative action.


Oil & Gas

Fuel Queues: NNPC Has 2bn Litres in Stock, Says Coy

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC Ltd) says it has two billion litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) In stock.

This is contained in a statement issued by Mr Adeyemi Adetunji, Executive Vice President, Downstream, NNPC Limited.

Adetunji said the stock of over two billion litres is equivalent to over 30 days sufficiency.

The NNPC, he said, has programmed vessels and trucks to unconstrained depots while massive loadouts from depots to states are closely monitored to ease fuel queues.

“The recent queues in Lagos are largely due to ongoing road infrastructure projects around Apapa and access road challenges in Lagos.

“The gridlock is easing out and NNPC Ltd has programmed vessels and trucks to unconstrained depots and massive loadouts from depots to states are closely monitored,” he said.

Adetunji said that Abuja was impacted by the challenges recorded in Lagos, adding that NNPC retail and key marketers had intensified dedicated loading into Abuja to restore normalcy.

“We want to reassure Nigerians that NNPC has sufficient products and we significantly increased products loading in selected depots and extended hours at strategic stations to ensure sufficiency nationwide.

“We are also working with industry stakeholders to ensure normalcy is returned as soon as possible,” he said. (NAN)

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Oil & Gas

Reps Committee Quizzes AGIP Oil over Alleged Tax Evasion

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The House of Representatives ad hoc committee on Joint Venture (JV) on Wednesday quizzed the Nigerian Agip Oil Company Ltd over alleged tax evasion.

Rep. Abubakar Fulata, the Chairman ad hoc Committee investigating the Structure and Accountability of JV Business and Production Sharing Contracts (PSCs) of the NNPC said it was not out to witch-hunt anybody.

He added that it be would be unfair for oil companies to evade taxes at a time the country was borrowing to fund budget.

He said almost all the oil companies in the country had no Certificate of Acceptance of Fixed Assets (CAFA) yet they had been enjoying capital allowance claims in violation of the nation’s law.

The committee said the oil companies did not have the right to choose the law their would, adding that ignorance of the law could not in any way be absolved.

The  committee asked the representative of Agip if in the course of operations they had not short-changed the nation by way of profit tax and capital allowance

The representatives of Agip which was led by Director, and General Manager, Public Affairs, Mr.

Barry Nwibani said over the years they relied only on Petroleum Tax Act for payment of taxes.(NAN)

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Oil & Gas

Fuel Scarcity: MOMAN, NNPCL Collaborate to Improve Distribution – Official

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The Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN) says it is working with the Nigeria National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Ltd., to improve the distribution of petrol across the country.

Mr Clement Isong, Chief Executive Officer of MOMAN, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), in Lagos on Saturday, against the backdrop of the current scarcity of petrol and long queues at filling stations.

Isong said the association had been holding a daily logistic emergency meeting with the downstream management of NNPCL on how to improve the supply of petrol.

According to him, the collaboration with NNPCL will enhance the distribution of petroleum products in the country.

“We are doing depot to depot check-in and check-out to enhance efficiency, also having logistic supply meetings with NNPCL.

“There is also collaboration among our members to cushion supply to various MOMAN’s stations.

“We arranged it in a way that any MOMAN member who does not have product can pick from fellow members’ depot to minimise supply gaps,” he said.

Isong also said the effort was to improve the supply of petrol at filling  stations across the country.

“NNPCL had an operational meeting with MOMAN to ensure that products are effectively distributed across the country.

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“The logistics meeting was to ensure adequate distribution of products to stations across the country,” he added.

The helmsman said MOMAN members would be working late and during the weekend to bridge product supply gaps.

He said MOMAN had been pushing out more products than it normally did.

He added that the scarcity was as a result of delay experienced at the point of receiving products from offshore to onshore at the port.

He, however, said the logistics challenge had been resolved and members were currently trucking out products.

However, the oil marketers and petroleum depot operators, under the aegis of Depot and Petroleum Products Marketers Association of Nigeria (DAPPMAN), called for quick intervention by the Federal Government.

Its Chairman, Mrs Winifred Akpani, urged the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) to comply with the Federal Government’s directive to end payment of port charges in dollars for petroleum products brought into the country.

Akpani maintained that accessing forex through the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) window would enhance their capacity, facilitate seamless supply of petrol, and birth a regime of sustainability in terms of storage, distribution and supply across the nation.

“DAPPMAN hereby calls on the government to establish a level playing field in the sector by giving petroleum marketers access to forex at the CBN exchange rate for their operations,” said Akpani.

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He emphasised that accessing FX at the official rate would boost fuel supply across the country.

She added that the burden of sourcing forex through the parallel market for transactions domiciled in Nigeria had left petroleum marketers in dire straits.

She said, “Accessing dollars for our operations has been an insurmountable hurdle for petroleum marketers.

“The difference between CBN exchange rate and the parallel market exchange rate continues to get wider by the day.”

NAN reports that some filling stations owned by major oil marketers were seen selling petrol at regulated price of N170 per litre, while stations belonging to IPMAN members sell between N220 and N240 per litre.

Most filling stations that have fuel collect N100 at the entrance before vehicles are allowed to enter filling stations, and additional N100 to sell product to vehicles owners.

Black marketers have taken advantage of the situation to hoard products and sell to desperate motorists at exorbitant prices. (NAN)

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